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Firefighter Falls Through Floor Battling Eagle River Blaze

By Matthew F Smith, Digital Producer, msmith@ktuu.com
Published On: Feb 12 2014 05:25:00 PM AKST

Firefighter Falls Through Floor Battling Eagle River Blaze

EAGLE RIVER -

A firefighter fell through the floor fighting a blaze at an Eagle River home late Wednesday afternoon.

Dispatchers for the Anchorage Fire Department said fire crews responded to a home at 6961 Waterfall Drive, just off Hiland Drive, that was about "50 percent involved" late Wednesday afternoon.

A neighbor called in reporting smoke and flames, dispatchers said. Firefighters said no one was home at the time of the fire.

“The first arriving crews found smoke and flames basically coming from what looked like an atrium” on the side of the house, said Capt. Steve Kostlin with Station 11 in Eagle River. About 40 units responded.

 

As crews tried to make entry the fire spread to the basement and the main floor. Crews tried to get into the basement first, but had to pull out and attack the flames from outside “due to the condition of the building and stairs being burned all the way through,” Kostlin said.

Around 4:30 p.m. AFD said firefighters were making "an aggressive interior attack" on the home as flames broke through the roof of the two-story home.

One firefighter fell through the floor into the basement of the home while battling the blaze. He was taken to a medical facility for evaluation but was not injured, firefighters said.

The first alarm assignment was at the scene of the fire, with four engines, three tenders, one truck company, one rescue company, and command officers all responding. In all, more than 40 firefighters were at the scene of the fire.

AFD was also calling for two additional tenders from the Chugiak Volunteer Fire Dept. Crews were filling tanks and shuttling water from Eagle River High School.

Firefighters said the blaze was out by 6:30 p.m., causing responders to switch gears into cleanup efforts.

“I would say it's going to be close to a total loss,” Kostlin said. “The contents in the garage appeared to be untouched, but the house appears to be a total loss.”

The Red Cross of Alaska said they were providing shelter for the family of four displaced by the fire.